0 Comments | Jun 11, 2010

The Myth of the Magic Marketing Arrow

Once upon a time, in a far away land, there were two adjacent kingdoms, MarketingHeaven and SalesAPlenty. These two kingdoms lived in perfect harmony (hey, it’s my fairy tale!), exchanging services, marrying each other’s cousins and not interrupting each other in meetings. When SalesAPlenty wanted to sell oxen or unload a beachfront community, all MarketingHeaven had to do was fire off one well-appointed arrow and the right buyer was er… found. No hunting, no farming, no cultivation.

Life was good. Everyone prospered.

We now return you to real life. And the truth is that there is no Magic Marketing Arrow. There are many, many ways to generate awareness and demand for your company and products. There’s an ever-expanding variety of media in which to dabble, but no one knows for sure which is the best for your business and your goals until they set to work, read the results and refine for next time. Marketing is a continuous process of messages to blast, offers to offer, new buyers to consider, and an infinite combination of variables to test.

The mistake that companies (especially smaller companies) make is thinking that they will get the best results they can get the first time they invest in marketing. They hire an agency or consultant to put together a plan, execute the first part of the plan, then pull the plug if the initial results are not as promised.

From the marketer’s perspective, each test provides valuable data to apply to the next round of testing, so that each subsequent campaign is more targeted. Campaigns in one medium are synchronized with campaigns in others, and social media provides the continuous soundtrack to build community and get people talking.

Any business that believes in a magic marketing arrow is in for a rude awakening, and any marketer that tells you they know that the first marketing effort will be a charm is deceiving you. Set realistic expectations and a budget that you can support, then release the arrows and see where they land. Next time you’ll be that much more accurate when you launch.

And you (and your marketing team) will live happily ever after. The End.

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